Sunday, June 15, 2014

tzatziki chicken salad and chipotle lime shrimp tacos

On the way home from the beach yesterday I consumed a quarter of a sriracha bagel (my new favorite), one Boston cream donut, a meal from Chick-Fil-A and four peanut butter crackers. I told myself I would make dinner when we got home. Except…we had no food. And after spending wayyyy longer in the car than we should have, I was not about to head to the store. So, we got Subway. And then we each had an apple fritter for dessert. And I finished another quarter of sriracha bagel.


I woke up this morning determined to get back on track with my eating. I scarfed down two scrambled eggs and spent the morning recipe-searching and grocery shopping. We loved both of the recipes I tried today—chicken salad for lunch and shrimp tacos for dinner. (I didn’t make side dishes for either.) I have a feeling I’ll be making both of them a lot this summer! Click on the recipe title to view the original recipe.

pic by José Picayo
adapted from Cooking Light
makes 3 generous servings, but you could stretch for 4 if using pita chips or pita bread

2/3 cup plain reduced-fat Greek yogurt
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill (I used double because I love dill!)
a tiny pinch of salt (add more to taste)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cucumber, seeded and diced (I peeled mine)
1 garlic clove, minced
2 cups shredded or diced cooked chicken (I grilled up one and a half insanely large chicken breasts, but you could use a rotisserie chicken)

Combine first 8 ingredients, then toss with chicken to coat. We at it plain, but the recipe suggests serving it with pita chips. We loved it just how I made it, but I bet feta would be yummy in there (and maybe black olives, too). I’m also tempted to serve it in lettuce cups next time!

from My Baking Addiction
Chipotle Lime Shrimp Tacos with Corn & Black Bean Salsa
adapted from My Baking Addiction
makes 8-10 tacos depending on the size of your tortilla

small taco-sized flour tortillas
1 pound shrimp; peeled and deveined
sour cream or greek yogurt 

for the marinade 
1 chipotle pepper in adobo; chopped* (in the International aisle alongside jalapeños and green chilies)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon cumin
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 lime (juice and zest)
2 tablespoons cilantro; chopped

for the salsa
3 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon white sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15 ounce) can sweet corn, drained OR fresh corn cut from the cob
1/2 orange or red pepper; diced
1/2 or whole jalapeno; seeded and diced
2 green onions, sliced

1. Combine marinade ingredients and let sit while you work on the salsa. (I don’t actually put the shrimp in the marinade, because I cook the shrimp in a skillet and use the marinade as more of a sauce.)
2. Combine the salsa ingredients in a separate bowl.
3. Grill shrimp or cook in a lightly oiled skillet over medium heat (about two and a half minutes per side.)
4. If you like, chop the shrimp into bite-size pieces. Add shrimp to marinade.
5. If you like, heat tortillas over the stove. Spread sour cream down the middle of each tortilla and top with the salsa and then the sauce-covered shrimp.


*You’ll have leftover chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. They’ll keep in the fridge for a week or two. If you don’t plan on using your leftover peppers anytime soon, freeze them in ice cube trays or in a freezer bag.

Monday, June 2, 2014

in the waiting

16/17/18 weeks!

We’ve been singing this song at church a lot lately and it moves me to tears every time I sing along. My favorite lines:You finish what you begin. You see it through til the end. In the silence, in the waiting, still we can know you are good. All your plans are for Your glory, yes we can know you are good. The Lord our God is ever faithful, never changing through the ages.

Enjoying this waiting has been a challenge. I need that reminder… as much as I don’t want to feel how I feel or think what I think... still I know God is good.

I keep thinking about when I was this far along with John. I’ll be 19 weeks tomorrow, and just like last time I’m anticipating the anatomy ultrasound. Unlike last time, I’m going into this one with a lot of dread mixed in with the joy. I hate it. I hate that for weeks now I have felt like throwing up when I think about that appointment. I hate that I cried until I couldn’t breathe after I finally called and scheduled it. I hate that I keep grasping for peace as if it is out of reach, as if I’m stuck being fearful (when that isn’t the truth).

"For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”
2 Timothy 1:7

I’ve been resisting writing this post because it’s hard to explain what I’m feeling, and it’s even harder when people respond with platitudes. “It will be okay!” “You’re meant to be a mom!” If I mention an ounce of fear, I’m being negative. If I say, “well, if something does go wrong with the baby…” then I’m being cynical. Here’s the thing: I’m not just thinking about what it was like to be pregnant with John—I’m also thinking about how this time last year I was literally waiting for my baby to die. I don’t LIKE that I’m struggling with fear! I don’t like that it is impossible for me to not imagine a scenario in which this pregnancy doesn’t go as planned. 

It sounds like I’m in the depths of despair, and I’m really not. Promise. I have big cries and little cries and the occasional panic attack, but the majority of each day is spent practicing finding satisfaction in this stage of life God has put me in. Even though my inclination is to want to rush to the finish line, I’m trying to appreciate these months before baby. When I get discouraged, I remind myself that not only am I still grieving John, but I’m pregnant. I’m bound to be emotional and tired at times. 

Let’s move on to the good stuff. Almost 19 weeks! Almost halfway! I can’t believe this is only my second baby post for this pregnancy. I’ve been feeling flutters for a couple of weeks now, and I never get tired of them. My belly, as you can see in the pics, is insane. Andy says, “oh my gosh, your belly!” EVERY day. I actually like that I’m showing a lot. I’m sure that will change in a month or so, but for now it gives me a little comfort. Hopefully my roundness comes from a growing baby and not just from the food I’ve been scarfing down (like the three strawberry sour cream scones I’ve eaten today).

There are two other preggos in my small group (yay!) and we recently went around and heard advice from the other women on things to do/relish before the baby comes. I loved their input (travel! sleep in! eat out!) and would love to hear yours!

A few things momma and baby have been up to lately: 
reuniting with Amy, one of my college roomies
(and buying a few things for your nursery at the Luckett’s Spring market)
snuggling with Autumn while the daddies went golfing
watching daddy and grandpa play golf